Node.js itself or nginx frontend for serving static files


Is there any benchmark or comparison which is faster: place nginx in front of node and let it serve static files directly or use just node and serve static files using it?

nginx solution seems to be more manageable for me, any thoughts?

Best Solution

I'll have to disagree with the answers here. While Node will do fine, nginx will most definitely be faster when configured correctly. nginx is implemented efficiently in C following a similar pattern (returning to a connection only when needed) with a tiny memory footprint. Moreover, it supports the sendfile syscall to serve those files which is as fast as you can possibly get at serving files, since it's the OS kernel itself that's doing the job.

By now nginx has become the de facto standard as the frontend server. You can use it for its performance in serving static files, gzip, SSL, and even load-balancing later on.

P.S.: This assumes that files are really "static" as in at rest on disk at the time of the request.